I do not usually write about films or television programme as book are my forte. However, during this lock down I watched a television drama called Years and Years which was an eye-opener. Whilst watching the programme the main thing which came to my mind was- ‘the world was not broken’.
Years and Years is a BBC series about a British, Manchester based, family called the Lyons. It focuses on the political, economic and technological situation of Britain in 2029. There was chaos. Banks were closing down, jobs were difficult to obtain, political views were dividing the nation.
A particular scene really got me thinking. In this scene ,the grandmother, who is the matriarch of the family address her brood around the dinner table. She categorically blames them for ruining the world. In shock, the family think she is losing it. These are the kids who have gone through certain trials and tribulations. One lost over a million pounds, one drowned whilst trying to smuggle a refuge into the country.
She states that many small acts of indifference have caused the economic and, social catastrophe. She makes a particular statement’
when they introduced all the automated services in the supermarket, how many of you did anything about it. You all complained, but no one did anything about it.
It was this statement which got me thinking. In the early 90’s, computers were becoming a common thing in the office. Casually, people would remark ‘computers are going to takeover our jobs’. Oh what a prophecy. This is exactly what has happened. In Years to Years, computers even took over a coveted and professional accountant job.
The world was not broken.
What do you think will happen if you try to fix something which is not broken.? You only make it worse. In my opinion, we have, tried to fix something. Thereby, making it worse.
We desired more. Consumerism. We desire things to happen quicker. Technology. What was the problem with the world 40 years ago? In my opinion , nothing was wrong with the world.
Nothing was wrong but people have tried to fix it. Things have changed a considerable amount.
There was a time when humans carried out the majority of jobs . If these humans became tired of one job they could easily and quickly moved to another. There were many available jobs. Jobs which required people and not computers. You were literally spoilt for choice.
Secondly, I remember when there only use to be three television stations. ITV, BBC1 and BBC2; and these three stations satisfied our entertainment crave. Now we are spoilt for choice as we have over a hundred channels to choose from. The world was not broken.
Streets were safe. Young children could walk to and from school unaccompanied. This is not the situation now. Parent are now even fearful of sending their child to the corner shop ,let alone school.
I remember collecting Green Shield stamps. We would collect the stamps and stick them in a collectors book. Then trade them in for the likes of toasters and carpet cleaners. The majority of our household appliances were purchased with these completed books. This taught us to for wait for our needs. We applied patience.
Today we want everything yesterday.
Sunday use to be a day of rest, to the extent that all shops closed. Everybody slowed down. The country slowed down. The earth rested.
I am sure many can remember when the world was very simple. This has now changed. The world is no longer simple. Watching Years and Years, you will notice how we have tried to fix the world. The world which was not broken.
Let us leave it alone
Thanks for reading and stay safe